URGENT query re: Extreme Unction - pls pls advise


#1

Hi all,

A close relation of mine is on his deathbed and I am earnestly praying that his soul will be saved (as I pray for my own too).

However, I'm seriously worried. I cannot judge this man, I don't know how religious or not his parents were, he is a baptized Catholic, but since his youth he has not attended Mass, he has not prayed, he has committed serious sins, whether he knew they were grave or not, I don't know, but in his life he has been what I can only describe as a bit of a hellraiser. As I said, maybe his upbringing meant he was unaware of how serious his sins were, but now he is near death I want him to be saved, regardless of his past life, as I want my own soul to be saved at the end.

So my question has two parts, he is in and out of conciousness at the moment, but when unconcious he was given the Last Rites, he couldn't speak, he was apparently sleeping, but the sacrament was administered to him. Is this enough on its own? And what if in his heart he is unrepentant - does the absolution given at the end "count"?

If not, my second question is:

I am good friends with a very understanding priest who would have no hesitation if I asked him to go in and ask the man when concious if he wants his Confession to be heard. Is this what is required to assure his salvation? If he is too weak to go into detail, I know the priest would be able to walk him through the sacrament with yes's and no's.

At the moment, he is at a critical stage, and the doctors have said he may be hours / days from slipping into a coma, his body has begun the process of shutting down and the cancer has spread everywhere, bar an all out miracle there is absolutely no prospect of recovery. The cancer has been spreading for years. Had he been spoken to about Confession before this turn for the worse, he would have told us in a not very nice way where to go, if you get my drift, but I am hopeful that now that Death is staring him in the face he will repent.

So my questions again - is the sacrament of the Last Rites enough, given the circumstances I explained above, or should I pursue my idea of getting a priest to offer to hear his Confession? He may well refuse, but at least the offer will have been made.

Please, I would be so grateful for your advice. I am reminded of the Little Flower who prayed for a notorious unrepentant murderer facing the death penalty who at the last moment kissed a crucifix.


#2

I will pray for your friend.

Talk to a priest and seek his guidance.


#3

In the Sacrament of the Sick or "the last Rites" as you called it all sins are forgiven. Only God knows what is going on in your friend's heart. I will pray for both of you.


#4

[quote="JGMendes4049, post:2, topic:293664"]
I will pray for your friend.

Talk to a priest and seek his guidance.

[/quote]

Ditto


#5

Your friend is all absolved up, and it seems unlikely that he could have sinned since he got Anointed.

Now, if he was asking to make a general confession, that would be different. But even then, it would just be for his own peace of mind. He's absolved up. He can't get more absolved than now. If he's not repentant, that's between him and God.

There are special prayers and readings for those dying or dangerously ill. You should be saying a few of those for him, not tiring him out by trying to make him confess.

May God bless and reward your concern for your dying friend.


#6

[quote="JGMendes4049, post:2, topic:293664"]
I will pray for your friend.

Talk to a priest and seek his guidance.

[/quote]

[quote="LB_in_TX, post:4, topic:293664"]
Ditto

[/quote]

Double ditto.


#7

The Sacrament of Anointing forgives all sins.

I will pray for your friend.


#8

Have deep trust in the Mercy of God, which He revealed to St. Faustina is His greatest attribute. Many of His messages to her revealed how powerful is the Chaplet of Divine Mercy prayed for the dying. Though your friend may not be conscious, you have much power using this prayer to obtain for him the mercy of God at the moment of his death. God may be calling on you to assist him, for it is not His will that a single soul be lost.


#9

[quote="Mintaka, post:5, topic:293664"]
Your friend is all absolved up, and it seems unlikely that he could have sinned since he got Anointed.

Now, if he was asking to make a general confession, that would be different. But even then, it would just be for his own peace of mind. He's absolved up. He can't get more absolved than now. If he's not repentant, that's between him and God.

There are special prayers and readings for those dying or dangerously ill. You should be saying a few of those for him, not tiring him out by trying to make him confess.

[/quote]

Thanks I was asking because I genuinely didn't know what the status is on being anointed when one is unconcious, but when up to that point one has been unrepentant. Neither do I know what is the state of his heart or mind at this point. I know what it has been, as in, I know his opinion of the faith up to this point, and it hasn't been great, which is why I've been so concerned.

I wouldn't ever make him confess, but I didn't know if I should be making this sacrament available to him while he is still concious, as in, I didn't know whether his salvation rested on his ability to make a deathbed confession or not.

*Can I just clarify then, does this mean that the sacrament of Extreme Unction, if given to a person who is unconcious and near death, has led a sinful life and is not contrite for their sins, absolves their sins anyway? *


#10

my prayers are with him!


#11

I really am not sure on these points,as i'm not a theologian.But when your friend is consious, you might mention confession to him I guess.Only Jesus knows the state of his soul.But you can pray for him,and ask Jesus to be merciful to your friend when he dies and that he may know the joy and happiness of heaven that all the saints and angels have. I'm sorry to hear about your friend, and will pray for him.


#12

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick works ex opere operato. The very act of giving the Sacrament produces the effect. It is not something he does, but something that Christ does through His minister.

Confession is highly recommended because it would move to repentance and contrition, and spare your loved one a significant expiation in Purgatory. But through the Anointing the Church has saved his soul.

I recommend that you kindly ask the priest to be by his side and await for his Confession.

I also recommend that you pray the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy.

Our prayers are with you.


#13

wdtprs.com/blog/2011/05/quaeritur-does-sacrament-of-anointing-forgive-mortal-sins/

Father Z as always has an excellent explanation here. The bottom line is that he is bound to confess his mortal sins if he regains his health. But since he was in no state to confess, his mortal sins are forgiven, assuming that he is in a state of contrition for them.

Part of the Last Rites also includes an Apostolic Blessing, which includes a plenary indulgence to remit the temporal punishment due to sin. I think you can rest assured that your friend is in the merciful hands of God.


#14

Thanks to all posters, I am praying so hard for his soul, as I hope my family will pray for mine when my time comes.

God bless


#15

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